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India – Pakistan: Two Nations Divided By A Common Destiny

A report submitted by Ravi Pattisam

An Indo- Pak symposium sponsored by AAINA helped to bring a fresh perspective and insight to the realities of the sub-continent and explored ways to improve Indo-US relations to the American public, media and decision makers. The symposium was well supported and attended by members of other sister organizations like Gurjar, IAMV, IAGB, JCGB, KANE, MARATHI, PRABASI, SIKH, TAGB etc.

Among the dignitaries and speakers who attended the symposium were: The Consul General of India in New York, Mr. Pramathesh Rath, Former American Ambassador to Belize and an expert on South Asia - Ambassador George Bruno, Director of Indic Studies Department, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth - Dr. Balram Singh, Director, MIT Program on Human Rights and Justice - Professor Balakrishnan Rajagopal, Assistant Professor, University of International Relations, Boston University and an expert on Pakistan affairs - Professor Adil Najam. Senator Steven A Baddour representing the state of Massachusetts, Ethics committee was also present. Ted O’Brien, host of “World of Ideas”, formerly News Director of WABU-TV in Boston, currently Midday anchor and producer at WBUR acted as Moderator.

After the inaugural and introductory speech by Dr. Sudarshan Chatterjee, Ted O’Brien commented that “one of India’s export are the fine minds that come with vast intellectual capabilities”. Presenting details about growth and enhancement in India, the Consul general gave a progressive speech about various activities taking place in India from roads to bridges and from economy to technology.

Ambassador George Bruno, “stressed that it is the desire of the United States to engage in a dialogue between India and Pakistan. One aspect, which concerns the US, is the nuclear card, which both countries possess.

Ambassador Bruno laid down his four point formula that might bring peace and stability in the region

 US policy Mutual inspectors should go to Pakistan and inspect that the nuclear arsenal are properly secured and let the world be informed.

 US must use its leverage to bring Pakistan back on the road to democracy and help Pakistan to diffuse the extremist’s elements.This would mean an end to corruption and help to lift educational opportunities for the people of Pakistan.

 India must begin to deliver an honest offer to enter into a dialogue with Pakistan to take steps to solve the Kashmir dilemma, while US can offer its good offices.

 The US should play a credible role and work towards a more friendly relationship with the two neighbors and play a more important role in bringing peace in the sub-continent.

In his speech Dr Balram Singh recalled that India and the US shared a long history which goes back to the famous Boston Tea Party, near Boston when the Tea that was dumped, came from India. (British East India Tea Company). Ravi Pattisam, Chairperson Media Relations felt that the symposium was very informative and educational to both the academicians, politicians and the American public”

Responding to queries, the panelists explained why the Line of Control couldn’t be treated as the actual international borders between the two countries. One of the attendees said “The symposium was an eye opener giving some insights to the actual facts in the sub-continent”. The AAINA vice president Mr. Shailesh Baid, specially thanked the Consul General of India in NY Mr. Pramathesh Rath, Ambassador Bruno, Senator Steven A Baddour and other panelists who have taken time to express their view points.

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Dr Adil Najam - one of the panelists; Mr Ted O'Brien' Moderator at the symposium; Honorable Consul General of India, NY - Mr Paramtesh Rath; Dr Sudarshan Chatterjee - President of AAINA; Mr Ravi Pattisam - Chairperson- Media Relations; Dr Ravi Kanjolia - Chairperson-Fundraising; Mrs Saroj

Mr Shailesh Baid - Vice-president AAINA; Dr Sudarshan Chatterjee - President AAINA State Senator - Steven A Baddour; Honorable COnsul General of India, NY - Mr Paramtesh Rath; Mr Ravi Pattisam - Chairperson Media Relations; Dr Ravi Kanjolia - Chairperson Fundraising; Mrs Kanjolia.

Dr Hargovind Rathore; Mr Shailesh Baid - Vice-president of AAINA; State Senator - Steven A Baddour; Honorable Consul General of India - NY Mr Paramtesh Rath; Mr Ravi Pattisam, Chairperson - Media Relations; Mr Shiva Sheel - Secretary of AAINA;

Mr Harbaldeepsingh - Chairperson - Planning and Event Management; Mr Himanshu Bhatnagar - Chairperson - Alliance; Dr Sudarshan Chatterjee - President of AAINA; Mr Ravi Pattisam - Chairperson - Media Relations; Honorable Consul General of India, NY - Mr Paramtesh Rath; State Senator - Steven A Baddour; Mr Ranjan Vadlapatla - President TAGB.

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